|Santa Muerte statues. Photo from Time.com|
Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Murder for a Saint: An Example of Immoral Religion
A family in Mexico is alleged to have murdered a woman and two young boys in ritual human sacrifice related to their fanatic belief in Santa Muerte, or ‘Saint Death’. The murders were said to have been committed so that the saint would grant them protection. While the Catholic church has condemned the saint as superstition (which would seem to be a pot/kettle situation to me), followers do not seem to be deterred by the church’s stance. According to Wikipedia, many of them have become disillusioned about the church’s ability to help them and have turned to this hybrid of Catholicism and traditional belief to attend to their wants and needs.
One must wonder, had they given up religion altogether instead of moving on to worship of a loosely-related character which still allows them to consider themselves religious followers (i.e. “good people”), if much tragedy might have been avoided. It is possible that their religion is one of the things they cite as keeping them from committing bad deeds but I think a lack of belief would be vastly less likely to lead to murder for its own sake.